Name: Amie Just
College Newspaper: University Daily Kansan
Where I Am Now: Montana football beat writer for The Missoulian
I worked for the University Daily Kansan — the University of Kansas’ student newspaper — on and off for four years. Over those four years, my titles included correspondent photographer, sports columnist, softball/swimming/track/volleyball beat writer, special sections editor and sports editor. During that time I had the opportunity to cover an incredible amount of sporting events, breaking news events, write well-researched features and teach younger student journalists things I’d learned. I counted at one point and I reached at least 200+ articles in my four years there. A lot changed from my first semester on staff to my last semester on staff. We reduced from a daily print edition to a twice weekly print edition. We shifted to a digital-first format. At one point, we didn’t have a faculty news adviser. We did several redesigns. Change was hard to get used to, but we learned from it and moved forward. Our reporting was necessary and important. I think that’s something that a lot of student journalists don’t hear, but we were lucky in that regard. We had people supporting us. My last semester at the Kansan as the sports editor was a draining one, but the lessons I learned in that semester are absolutely part of why I have the job I have today. Not everything about covering sports is fun — it sure wasn’t that semester with all the sexual assault coverage, criminal coverage, Title IX coverage, and other difficult reporting topics — but I learned a lot and grew a lot. And all of that learning is why I’m at where I’m at. Student newsrooms are important. They launch careers. They’re learning centers. They serve as inspiration for future generations of journalists.